Saturday, May 31, 2008

shoes! volume 1: ooh la la

This weekend I received my first stipend for working for Nebraska Shakespeare. I was thinking about how to best use this chunk of cash towards the wedding. Catering down payment? A wedding band for Mr Fiance? No, sons, I think some of this needs to go to shoes.

Not that I'm going to spend all of it on shoes, of course. But Zappos, Endless, and all give free shipping to and from, with 365 days to return. Meaning, I can order several pairs right now, try them on, take the top contenders to my fitting and return all the loozahs. Oh yes, yes I like this plan.
None of these will be amongst the contenders, however, even though I am IN LOVE WITH THEM, because they each cost more than twice what my most expensive pair of shoes costs.

Expensive = fancy frou frou velvet lace feathers jewels. And LOVE! Sweet, sweet love.

Maybe I should consider these. Halloween requires drama, you know?

POLKA DOTS...droooooooooooool

Wait, these are just shiny and pretty, why are they so expensive?

See, I'm not even sad that I can't afford these, I'm just happy they live in the world. Is that weird? It sounds weird.

Shoe 1, Shoe 2, Shoe 3, Shoe 4, Shoe 5, Shoe 6.

Monday, May 26, 2008

reception venue: achieved!

As I have mentioned, we have made a deposit on our reception venue, so we're all official and stuff in at least one area, and even if we never find a place to hold the ceremony, there WILL be a place where we can go eat some dinner and dance.

We did end up going with the Scouler Ballroom. In my first post about possible venues, I worried that the building might be a little too big and too expensive, but when you do very special wedding math*, it's not going to be too bad. Also, c'mon guys, it's really pretty, and in the heart of downtown, and has a long list of possible caterers with whom I am excited to begin negotiations. I know several people who have gotten married there so I can just totally steal their setup. JBC, prepare to get bothered!

So hooray! HOORAY!

*Wedding Math: a special equation where a venue SEEMS to be inexpensive, but they only use the super expensive caterer and require you to pay all sorts of hidden fees and you end up with crap food and cranky guests and unhappy Shannons. If you have more than one Shannon lying around.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

bridesmaids: soon to be ACHIEVED

Thanks for the bridesmaid dress input, both in the comments and in personal discussion. I have decided that we should go with the Alfred Angelo Separates, and, at the brilliant suggestion of the O.H's, bridesmaids will get to choose amongst the tops and the two skirts (because AA offers TWO tea lengths. Gotta love it.)
All I need to do tomorrow is check and make sure that I want his color "grape" over "eggplant"...because eggplant is a darker purple I thought that was where I was supposed to go, but on the internet eggplant looks almost navy. A quick trip to my local bridal shop will clear that up quickly and we can get these babies ordered!
I really like this idea because then there's some unity (all tea length with pleated tops) but they can choose either a fuller or more narrow skirt, and the three tops each have a very distinct look. They can choose what looks the best on them or what they may wear again...if they need a pleated orange top, of course.
(The collage above is just a guess of what it could be, but I'm sure it will look much cooler in real life...but check out the font. Pretty sweet, yeah?)

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Bridesmaid Dresses

or, alternately:
or, third title option:
Bride Lesson: Stop Assuming Things Will Make Sense
and last but not least:
Please Help Me.

Let's go back that beautiful moment in Loomis when I realized that I was actually wearing the dress in which I would be married. It was a lovely moment. Things were in place. We decided while we were there that we should maybe look into bridesmaid dresses and have my sister (the Mrs-0-H) try on a few of the styles and colors I had been considering so we could see those colors next to my dress because, you know, it all goes around the dress.
Getting married is a very selfish endeavor.
Well it turns out I was once again wrong about what I wanted for this wedding. Or I suppose "Ignorant to the Beautiful Possibilities" is a nicer way to say it. I said I wanted a short, simple dress, and I end up with a long, elegant, pleated to within an inch of its life confection of dress perfectitude. I also thought I wanted plain brown dresses for the bridesmaids, possibly bought from an online source like jcrew,, or even Target. I figured brown was a nice neutral safe ground and would maximize re-wearability.
But then I realized, when I actually had Jessie trying on dresses next to my dress, that I had forgotten that I have really beautiful bridesmaids with lots of personality, and that neither of those things were being represented by "brown." So I decided to shake things up a bit and go back to a color scheme that I had briefly considered: purple and orange. Or, as we later discovered, "Grape" and "Sienna." These colors are really gorgeous together, are Halloween and Fall themed without making one gag, and lucky for me, I have two bridesmaids that will look brilliant in burnt orange and three that will glow in dark purple. Once we got down to the swatches, clearly the perfect colors were made by Alexia designs. They didn't have any dresses that really thrilled me in the store, but they gave me a website address where I could view all their styles. I went, I looked, and I was unimpressed...until I chanced a click on their separates collection, where I found this:

I really love this dress. The pleating on the top hollas back to my dress while also offering a little tummy camouflage (I figure if my dress lets me stick it out all the way, why not theirs?) I also loved the idea of separates because my maids are all different sizes and I didn't want them to spend an arm, a leg, and a sleepless night over alterations. It seemed perfect!
Until I emailed for a quote and it turns out they don't make tea-length skirts for their separates.
THIS MAKES NO SENSE TO ME WHATSOEVER, especially since most of their bridesmaid dress styles are available in tea-length and it's like the most popular style at the moment.
So I had to look somewhere else, where the colors are not "Grape" and "Sienna." (which, not to have a total bride moment, but other colors of burnt orange and dark purple are not the same. Boo hoo hoo. Poor me.)

I remembered Jessie trying on an Alfred Angelo at the store. I liked their purple color better, but the orange was just a little more orangey than I liked. But I would rather have "slightly orangey" than no orange at all, and I found out he has a separate line WITH TEA-LENGTH SKIRTS. As one OUGHT TO HAVE. Suck it, Alexia.Their separate line has several super cute options that add pleats and visual interest:

The only problem I have with their line is that in the virtual simulator the skirt seems to be a slightly lighter color than the tops. I'm not sure if this actually bothers me or not. Probably not. There's also a dress or two, although I'm not entirely willing to give up on the separates:
So I thought, let's go with Alfred Angelo then. These are pretty cute!

But then I was reminded today by one of my fabulous fellow costumer friends that if I really liked the Alexia ones, the skirts could probably just be chopped off by a skilled seamstress and it wouldn't look to funky. So now I'm totally torn.

Alexia pros: The orange is a prettier, more sophisticated color, and I think Alexia is slightly cheaper than Alfred Angelo. It also has the most structured pleating, and the skirt seems to match colors almost perfectly. And, here's a big one, Alexia is carried by net bride, so girls who couldn't find a salon or wanted a discount could order online through them.

Alfred Angelo pros: We wouldn't have to worry about someone butchering the bottom skirt because it would be the proper length. Alfred Angelo is also a lot easier to find in salon if not on net bride. Also I think the pleats on the first top pictured above look the most like the ones on my dress.

Please give input, ESPECIALLY if you're one of the bridesmaids in question...this has to be decided SOON!

But just so you can see I'm not crazy, check out how pretty the colors will look together:

Saturday, May 17, 2008

absolutely. positively.

Things Shannon MUST Have Done By Next Saturday:

1. Go to one of the local bridal stores that carry Alexia and double check colors/styles for bridesmaid dresses so they can be ordered--because that is supposed to happen NOW.

2. Call/make appointments with at least three possibilities for ceremony locations--because that is supposed to happen SIX MONTHS AGO. I would also like to go walk around downtown, starting at the reception site, to see if there is an awesome ceremony type place that I hadn't considered. If anyone wants to walk around downtown after five sometime next week with me, give me a text and you're totally invited. We will probably get ice cream.

3. If items 1 and 2 manage to actually be achieved, call some of our catering options and see if our date is open, and if so, arrange an interview with some of them.

4. Magically do this while continuing to work one full time job and two part time jobs and not die.

(however, even though these are things I should be doing at this point, we have a copy of The Wedding Book in the store and I am spending an awful lot of time browsing its lovely pages, reminding myself that I already have two wedding planning books and do not need another, especially now that I'm no longer in the planning stages, I am now in the ACTION STAGE)

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

as much as i love planning the "wedding"....

...we must remember to plan the "hallo"....
Greg and I love Halloween, obviously, hence the wedding date. But I am starting to love Halloween more and more just because it is making my wedding planning easier. I don't have to put a lot of effort into entertaining my guests, because Halloween is just naturally a fun day. People will remember when the wedding is because everyone--Target, ABC Family, their children--will be counting down the days anyway. And, because I'm weird, and even though I'm a theatre major, I don't want all the attention on me all the time. That would make me terribly uncomfortable and probably make me feel like I had to poop all the time.
Yeah, I said it. Deal.
Oh, and there's the costume party reception, which is a very exciting idea. Lots of friends and family members have already started brainstorming their costumes, and by my counts there will be a gaggle of little kids running around dressed as ducks or whatever.
So I suppose the question is...what's my costume?

There's no way in hell I'm taking off that dress. It'd be a waste of money and I love that thing so much I might just wear it the next day as well. I thought about adding a really dramatic head piece, something with feathers or bubbles (a post on that later) but since I might be wearing a pretty dramatic one already, that takes that out...but one option I've been considering lately is masks.

Masks would allow me to keep on my dress and accessories and not get in the way of dancing, cake, and smooching.

I really love the above one from wing and talon (look at those little eyelashes!) but I don't love the color. Since they're on etsy, I'm sure I could get the seller to customize it in white and silver--yeah, you're picturing it. And it's cute. There are sort of matching male version for Mr. Groomy Groom.

But I think the leaf masks might also conflict with head pieces...and I don't know if they scream "Ren Fair," since that is their original purpose.

These wire options from byzantiumlotus could also be REALLY cute . I'm not entirely thrilled with her designs (or their prices!) but the idea of a wire mask is strangely appealing. It wouldn't cover up any of my face or ruin my makeup and would be so simple that I could essentially wear any other jewelry I wanted. I could also potentially make it myself, which is not an option with the leather masks.
In my searchings I've found a couple of more masculine options for Greg. The copper one at the top of this post and this silvery one are some of my favorites for him, but again, the silver mask is a little RenFair. But we could get away with a little drama since it's Halloween, couldn't we? I don't know. It's just an idea.

Friday, May 9, 2008


Several months ago I bought this pair of Ann Koplik earrings from The Afternoon, where I work. They're very simple, pretty, and they have a very art deco vibe, which goes nicely with my ring and now, amazingly, with my recently acquired art deco dress.
I've just been wearing them as every day earrings, but I've thought about making them my wedding earrings. Ann Koplik makes a matching locket as well, but I think since the dress has a lot of sparkles on the collar, I'll probably go without a necklace, even though, oh, I do like lockets.But I think maybe we should keep the jewelry simple, especially since we have ordered a rather elaborate comb.

Now, that being said, LOOK WHAT I FOUND:
PLEATED EARRINGS. You already know how I feel about these, don't you? I love them, obvs. I worry that they might prove too large for wedding earrings, and they might compete with the head piece, but oh buckaroo, that doesn't mean I won't try.

So, feedback--they're about 1 3/4 inches long (pretty big earrings), not expensive but they cost enough that I have to at least think about it...should I buy them and try them out, or should I save myself some tackiness and let them go?

Thursday, May 8, 2008

mrs in action

This is a pump from the Kenneth Cole REACTION line, it is called Mrs In Action. I want this shoe very badly for several reasons:
1. It has the most adorable name for a wedding shoe ever.
2. It is pleated, like my dress.
3. All reviews say you can stand in this shoe for hours without pinching.
4. I think I could actually keep my foot in this shoe.

I've had this link in my bookmarks for months now, but now it would appear that no one on the internet carries the shoe in ivory anymore. Probably a bunch of stinky brides scooped them up. The bronze (a perfectly reasonable option for your hallowedding bride) appears to be constantly on clearance, but to only exist in a size six, which is maybe the most infuriating thing ever?

Oh wait...further exploration found ivory AND bronze ones on to a size 8.5. Well, if any of my bridesmaids want a kick ass bronze shoe, go for it. It'll look really great.



I love robots, and steampunk, and therefore I also love buildersstudio. Not only do they make adorable wedding robots, they sell RAYGUNS. There's not a lot of budget for small pieces of wood at the moment, but I think we should keep them in mind for like an anniversary present. Or commission a piece to be made when we get another dog or something.

(did you see the tiny gear bouquet? it made me squeek.)

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

THE DRESS, Part 3: Patience Rewarded

I believe the words you are looking for are "oooh" and "ahhhhh"

Those pleats? Those pleats make me look really skinny. They are my new best friends.


I must've seen pictures of this dress a million times, but I never bookmarked it or considered it in any way. This should teach us all a valuable lesson in keeping an open mind. And that sometimes, bridal dress consultants do have your best interest at heart.

THE DRESS, Part 2: The Dress That Totally IS


So, the first round of shopping was a total bust. It was such a bust that I didn't really want to try on any more dresses, and put no further effort into finding a wedding dress. This was a problem, because the wedding dress is a cornerstone of the wedding, just like your colors and your season. Without the bride's dress, you can't pick out bridesmaid dresses. You can't pick out tuxes. You're not even supposed to pick out flowers. You find that dress and everything else kind of falls into place.
Or so they say. I have recently found this to be true.
Anyway, my mom suggested we try again, but not in Omaha. She had been hearing from everyone and their dog that if you wanted THE dress, you should go to Loomis or Aurora.

"What's a Loomis?" you ask. "Is that a fancy bridal boutique I am not aware of?" No, friends. Loomis is a very very tiny town outside of Kearny, and Aurora is outside of Lincoln. They are small towns that, legend has it, have amazing bridal stores.

Okay, I said, but in my brain I was thinking Loomis? I'm supposed to find my dress in Loomis? Maybe for you guys from Grand Island and Hastings Loomis is the bee's pajamas, but I've got like seven bridal stores in Omaha.

That's right, I put on airs, and huffed around, and thought it probably wouldn't work out. I thought I was too good for Loomis. I apologize, Loomis. I was wrong.

So I arranged to go back to town for a long weekend, longer than I think I was home for Christmas, even, and we'd go to Loomis and Aurora, and then Grand Island and Kearny if necessary. Because we needed to find a dress right away. Time is running short. They say it takes about four months to ORDER a dress. I'm getting married in six.

So I came home. I bought a new, better strapless bra. We make appointments at the shops that take appointments, my mom and sister take vacation days, and we set out for Loomis on Friday morning. As we were driving I kind of had a feeling like I was going to cry. I didn't know if it was excitement or dread. I decided to try on EVERY style, every color, every cut...I would find something. I had to.

We get totally lost on the way there. TOTALLY lost. You have to cut through another tiny town and take a gravel driveway to get there. And then when we DO get arrive, it is BRIGHT PINK, with palm trees on it. Because it is called "The Bridal Isle." Like, an island. In the middle of Nebraska. We walk in and it has red and purple shag carpeting and inside the dressing rooms there are those really low ceilings with the panels like you have in your basement. There is also a sign that says ABSOLUTELY NO PICTURES.

Oh my god, I thought. What have I agreed to?

A lady comes to greet us and takes my information. Then she gestures to a large wall of dresses. There's a pretty good selection...probably the same number as the Bridal Gallery in Omaha.
"This is wall one," she says. "Pick six or seven dresses you'd like to try on, just to get started."
Wall one? I look around the corner and there are even more dresses...racks and racks of dresses. We are talking DB selection here, people. And almost everything is in my size because this is central Nebraska and around here girls like beef. Woo hoo!

Once we made our "first round picks," they grab me a dressing room and assign me an attendant, Ann. And then they tell my mom and sister to take a seat because Ann will be helping me get dressed. WHAT? I know I'm in theatre was a little like that scene from Fame. You know the one I'm talking about. I was so weirded out she had to remind me to take off my jeans. Oh. Right. No pants under dresses. RIGHT.
After awhile though, it wasn't such a big deal. I chilled in my bra and panties and the platform high heels they gave me to try on with dresses. Kind of made me feel like a model to tell you the truth.

So, okay, that feeling? THE feeling I was talking about? The rumors are true. You do get a feeling when you put on the right wedding dress. You kind of tear up a little bit and you smile all the time, and you think "I'm really getting married. Holy shit." And you're just so fucking HAPPY about it you can't even take it. It's like that. Things click in your head. It seems stupid and totally like a ploy to get you to spend money but it's true.

What they don't tell you, but I think they should, is that you can get that feeling more than once. It's NOT like a soul mate. There isn't one dress out there for you, there are probably like a dozen. This comforts me. What if THE dress wasn't carried in your local bridal shop? That would suck right? But you CAN find it, I promise. I know, because I found three.

Three dresses that made me tear up and say "Ohhhhhhhhh...I'm a bride." And this is why I'm sad I couldn't take pictures, because I wish I could show you these dresses, the ones I didn't get but still gave a little of my heart to. (See, more of the sappiness. Ah, love)

The first dress we will refer to as "Princess Puff." There is a little added twinge of affection for Princess Puff because it is the first dress I got The Feeling for. When Ann zipped it up I just started saying "I really like this one. I really like this one" which in stoic Shannon speak is "AHHHHHHHHHHH!"
Princess Puff made my mom cry. Twice. She said it looked like what a little girl would draw for her wedding dress. It was strapless and the bodice was pleated (PLEATS) and it went a little farther down on one side than the other (causing us to also refer to this dress as "the asymmetrical one") and had a little over skirt that was also asymmetrical that fell over the ENORMOUS underskirt, which was all glittery and sparkly. It had embroidery of flowering branches over one side of the bust and one side of the waist. It was very, very princessy, and I looked like a million bucks.
As I said, my mom cried. My sister said "I think it's a would be a ten but it didn't make me cry."
We had to try on more dresses. But as I went to take off the dress I said "I just want to make it clear that I really like this one."
The next dress I loved my mom pulled because of the color--it was a light golden brown sparkly mermaid dress and around the bottom there were PLEATS. PLEATS, YOU GUYS. Beautiful pleats that I had to kick through to walk. The color was absolutely gorgeous. The whole ensemble seemed very Halloweeny. Like it would set the tone for the whole event. The sample was a little small, but I could imagine myself in one that fit. And in my imagination that girl looked GOOD.
A debate began. The color was phenomenal, but it wasn't as bridey. The other one seemed a little less...well, slutty... but was way more princessy. Also, pleats. My heart was torn.
Ann brought me back another few options, which worried me. I worry when salespeople bring me stuff, especially since I work in retail. You're supposed to sell the expensive stuff. That's just business. But I tried it on anyway.
I don't know if I've mentioned it, but Anne is my new favorite person.
It was gorgeous. A sign of Ann's bridal genius was that it was an exact combination of the two dresses I already loved. It had the pleated bodice and asymmetrical skirt of the Princess Puff but the simplicity of the mermaid, and was sort of a mermaid cut but still comfortable. Also, I think the whole ensemble weighs about ten pounds, max. Oh, and straps, so I don't have to worry about my dress falling down. Oh, and BUTTONS ALL DOWN THE BACK. Mmmmmm.
She zipped it up and my lip quivered a little bit.
I tried on all three AGAIN, just to be sure, but the third one had it. I had narrowed it down to three based on emotion, so for final elimination I went with logic. The first one was just too fluffy. Even bustled the back would stick out several feet, making dancing difficult and using the bathrooom completely impossible. The mermaid was flat down the front and I tend to have a tummy, so I wouldn't feel comfortable in it even if I lost a bunch of weight.
My sister also made a very nice observation about the third one--it was simple and it makes me look like a pretty girl, not a girl in a pretty dress, if that makes sense

(Actually, she said "Lots of glitter is camouflage uglier girls" but I thought I'd nice it up a bit)

My mom and Ann went off to look at head pieces and I said, "Jessie, I think I'm going to pull a ten..." and then I cried a little bit. But that was okay.
And then I thought,
"Shit. How much does this dress cost? I had decided on a dress and I didn't look at the price tag? What the hell is my problem? My mom is paying for my dress and I don't want her to spend a lot. Also I have horrible guilt problems, and I don't want to spend so much money on something that is exclusively for me, that I'll only use once..."
And of course, Ann had pulled it. The lady who would get commission from the dress. I had seen a dress similar to this one that was on Rack One for $1500 (hence me not trying it on even though it had a jacket) and I thought oh no, oh no, please don't let it be more than $1500...shit shit shit...

I pulled out the tag.

And it

She pulled me a CHEAPER dress? WHAAAAAAAAAAT?

Have I mentioned that I love Ann? I totally love Ann. Ann might be an angel. I haven't ruled it out.

After deciding on the dress we took measurements and had a surreal moment when we had to decide between white, ivory, creme or gold--which are all just WHITE, and look exactly the same, but we still took time to decide--and I also picked out my bridesmaid colors and a really kick ass head piece comb thingy. And everything else is falling into place. The dress is the cornerstone, as I have said. And I didn't have to go to Aurora! Win win win.

So go to the Bridal Isle, and don't judge books by their covers, and have faith in taffeta. It will all turn out okay.

i hate myself for loving you

Before I go into another enormous dress-buying post, look what I saw on weddingbee:
I. Need. This. Bag. Why are you so expensive, bag? Why? You're so perfectly autumnal, you are in my colors, you even have the little feather froo-froos that are going to be in my bouquet!

I could make this, surely. Right? That's just what I need...another DIY for something completely pointless and expensive. I AM A BRIDE AFTER ALL.

THE DRESS, Part 1: The Dresses That Weren't

Note: I acknowledge that some people do not give half a damn about the experience of buying the dress and they just want to see PICTURES of the damn thing. So I'm going to post the whole story in a post or two and pictures above and you can look at one, both, or neither, depending on you cynicism and hatred of love and all things pretty. And how much I may have already told you to your face.

Okay, so the overly long story:

I realize that I never actually mentioned how our first wedding weekend went, all the way back in January, when my mom and sister came up and we went to a bunch of dress shops and a bridal fair.
I won't waste your time with the bridal fair...I wish I hadn't wasted my time with the fair either. All I got out of it were some tuxedo possibilities, the consideration of chair covers, and a bunch of unnecessary emails to my wedding email address.
But we did do dress shopping. Ohhh, did we do dress shopping.
I had gone shopping before, very early in the wedding process, but that experience had sucked, frankly, do to poor customer service/lack of my own enthusiasm. This time would be different, I decided, because we would really TRY to find something. And I thought we WOULD find something.
That weekend.
I was sure of it.
This was January, I'd like to point out. Four months ago.
Ashley (the Miss-0-H) was going to come but then she had to work, so just the Jackson girls (the Ma-o-B and the Mrs-o-H) set off on the magical fairy princess dress adventure. First, we went to Bridal Traditions on Pacific St. It took us a while to find it because it was in a strip mall, and we drove by it a couple of times until my mom finally noticed that it said "tuxedo rentals" on the side. The ladies at Bridal Traditions were very, very nice. My only beef would maybe be that they don't make appointments, so I think I waited half an hour for a fitting room. But that just gave us more time to sort through dresses.
Most of the dresses I tried on at Bridal Traditions were posted here, with the intention that I would talk about them later...which I am. It's just been months and months and nobody cares anymore.

The first dress we tried on was supposed to be a joke dress. We'd pulled it off one of the dummies because my sister said it'd be neat to see me in a mermaid dress. According to my body type, most bridal magazines and websites said I should be in a mermaid dress, but I'm not a wee person and I can be pretty self conscious. But I thought it'd be fun to see. We weren't going to actually consider it because it was over three times what I wanted to spend.
Here's a tip...don't try on really expensive dresses because they tend to be really, really pretty. Turns out those bridal magazines know their shit. I do look really good in mermaids.

Although that dress (which my family thereafter referred to as The Expensive Dress) looked REALLY good, I didn't get any strong feelings off of it other than "PRETTY" and "SOFT" and "THIS LACE MUST COST A FORTUNE PER YARD." I didn't think "MINE." And that's the feeling I wanted off my dress. Especially if it will cost me the down payment of a new car.

(However, as the months passed and I realized that I had to order a dress pretty much right away, I started reconsidering a lot of things, like the fact that maybe that feeling doesn't exist, or maybe it just doesn't exist for me. So I reconsidered at this dress, also from Bridal Traditions, which wasn't a big contender when I tried it on, but made me look really pretty in pictures. And I'm super vain like that.)

I would like to say that, except for the wait, the whole Bridal Traditions experience was VERY positive. They learned my name, they seemed to give honest advice about the dresses. Their dressing rooms were enormous and they let my mom and sister in to help me (and then my family could deal with the Worst Strapless Bra Ever). It really was a beautiful experience. I really appreciated that that was the first place I went dress shopping with my mom and sister, because it was very classy, comfortable, and nice. It made me feel a lot like a bride.


My mother HATED David's Bridal, and I've got to say, my experience there wasn't super positive. Now, I'm not a snob. I know a lot of beautiful dresses that have come out of David's Bridal, I have seen brides rocking the DB and looking like fairy princesses. It's not about the dresses. It's the experience. Maybe I went on a bad night, but we were given no help finding dresses (luckily I know my own size), the girl who was supposed to be helping me ignored most of my questions and didn't understand basic dress terminology, the lighting was terrible and unflattering and the dressing rooms are smaller than ones I've been in department stores. There was no room for people to come in and help me, luckily I was only trying on shorties and mermaids at this point because if I'd brought in a big poofy dress there would not have been room for me. My mom calls it the Dress Warehouse. I think it still gives her nightmares.

But, I do have to hand it to them, they had a lot of short dresses, which is what I really wanted.Had we not had Wedding Weekend II: Planning Extreme, and I hadn't shopped for other dresses, I probably would've gone with the above dress, without the jacket. It was simple, made me look cute, and if I wanted to wear it with a cardigan (which I so would have) and added an orange petticoat for the reception, it wouldn't have minded. It was easy like a Sunday morning.

Here are some other DB picks...I apologize for the incredibly ugly pictures...we had no digital camera with us at the time, and my scanner is broken, so I'm taking pictures of pictures. Eww. Maybe when all is fixed and done I'll do a big montage board of all the dresses I tried on.Cute, but too "spring." I, however, look really adorable.

Lacey. I like lace. A lot. But I hated their jacket with it and I couldn't figure out what else I would wear with it.

A DB mermaid (this was a favorite of some). I thought it was pretty but not me AT ALL. Also, the fabric was weird and scratchy.

We left DB with the style number of the short dress with ribbon detailing. The price was right, I could see myself wearing it, I knew how to update it to make it more "me." But I hadn't had that feeling, you know? The one everyone tells you about the moment you say you're going dress shopping. "Oh, you'll just put it on and you'll know. You'll have THE feeling." THE feeling for THE dress. They always say THE dress. Like it's a bigger deal than the fiancee, almost.
Well, I still hadn't had THE feeling.

We had only one place left to go that first weekend, The Bridal Gallery. The BG is right by my house and they have a stop light right in front, so I stop in front of it on the way to work pretty much every day and I leer at the pretty dresses in the window. The people at BG are also very nice, and the experience is very good. I know a lot of people who got their dresses there, as well, and they looked phenomenal. Got to say, though, that they have less selection than the other places I went to.
This was our third dress shop, so we kind of knew the routine. We wanted short, if they had it (they didn't), we liked lace, and suddenly, over the course of like, a day, we were obsessed with mermaids.

This mermaid was very similar to the Very Expensive Dress, and was slightly cheaper. My mom said if we went with mermaid, we should go with this one.I don't remember being this enthused about that dress, but I look pretty damn excited, don't I?

This dress was VERY pretty. (and look at the mock-antiqueness of the pictures. That's unintentionally very cool looking) My mom and sister said this dress might be It. I know, the front doesn't look like much, but oh, friends, the back...
I have a hundred pictures of the back of this dress. I love the buttons. I love the lace. Don't love the fact that on this day I forgot the strapless bra and went with a dark green number. It kind of ruins the feeling. But trust me, it was gorgeous.
Again, a very pretty dress that I felt nothing about except "it's pretty." My mom wrote down the numbers of some dresses, in case we wanted to order them later, and wedding weekend ended, not with a bang but with a "Now what?" We were tired, discouraged, I had a nasty case of bead burn (sequins hurt, yo) and we didn't have a dress.
I tried. I had tried on a lot of dresses, all styles and prices, and nothing felt like it was mine. I wondered if I was too practical to have The Feeling for The Dress, and maybe I should just settle on whatever was cheapest, or looked the nicest. Lucky for me, I didn't settle. The Knot kept sending me emails informing me that I should be on my second fitting by now, and I told the knot to eat me. I ordered a dress disaster off ebay, I considered everything I saw in department stores that was under $200 that was white. I developed a white taffeta ulcer. But I waited...or procrastinated...and I found something that was pretty AND cheap, and gave me all those warm fuzzy feelings. Wanna see it?
Well, too bad. I'm gonna go eat lunch. BE PATIENT.

Monday, May 5, 2008

ebay dress: failed

So much to cover, but let's start with something I'm sure you've been wondering about: the ebay dress.
I could've blogged about the dress a long time ago...but it was a big ol' disappointment, and hallowedding is about happy things! Pretty things! And well, on me, that dress is neither.It just had no oomph, you know? I put it on and made that exact face, that "Ehhhhhhhhhh, no" face. (Recreated for your viewing pleasure! Notice the new haircut!) Not super flattering or super comfortable. Also, although I was thrilled to ORDER a vintage dress, I remembered when I put it on that "vintage" usually also means "delicate."
I think if someone wore this dress they would have to be very gentle and careful. On a daily basis I am rarely either of those things. And at my wedding, pssssssh, forget about it. The last thing I want on the most stressful...erm, I mean, wonderful day of my life is for my zipper to split when I'm shaking my money maker to Paradise by the Dashboard Light.
So I've decided when I have a moment to myself I will resell it on ebay or something. The disappointment of this dress--which was exactly what I had pictured my wedding dress looking like, so why didn't it work out? why? whyyyyy?---prompted me to plan WEDDING WEEKEND II: Planning Extreme. Where I found my actual dress that gives me warm fuzzies. Which I will talk about soon, once I find some more pictures. Be patient.